December 22, 2009, "Unforgiveness to Forgiveness"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Stevens Criswell

"And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses."

~ Mark 11:25 & 26 ~

Wrapping gifts I could hear the television change the channel. If you have 'Tivo' or any other digital recorder you know what I am talking about. It went from praise music to a familiar voice. As I scurried down the stairs to turn the channel, I saw that the familiar voice was none other than Richard Roberts, the son of the late Oral Roberts. Richard was speaking at his father's memorial service.

As I stood there listening to the kind and fond words of his earthly father. I then heard Richard so eloquently speak of what his father had taught him. He said something to this effect, "My father reminded me that unforgiveness is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die."

This statement that he made was so poignant. Immediately I was reminded with Truth what bitterness, grudges and unforgiveness do...they lead to death when we should be living life.

I also saw a 'picture' in my head of arteries and veins in the human body and seeing blood clots form. It was a cooerlation of the 'clot' of unforgiveness. This cooerlation revealed that this 'clot' does not allow the majestic, powerful and loving mercy and grace of God to flow 'through' our lives and because of that it is not allowed to flow 'upon' our lives.

No wonder Jesus said as it is recorded in Mark 11 if we do not forgive others, God will not forgive us. It seems harsh, however the attributes of God are based on His Righteousness and His Justice...they are the foundations of God's indescribable Throne (Psalm 89:14).

Through this I was reminded that God will not do anything contrary to His Word. He is not moved by our feelings of why we don't forgive. He is not moved by what was done to us. He is not moved by our moveable circumstances and situations. He is unchanging and immovable. God is not a man that He should EVER lie (Numbers 23:19).

As I was reminded of those powerful truths, I believe the Holy Spirit whispered in my heart that if I truly want God to 'move' on my behalf then I need to move in under Who He is and His promises. I need to stop clinging to my 'rights' of justifying why I should be offended or why I spitefully have harbored a grudge.

During this time of Christmas, the pressure is on. However, just because the pressure is on, does not mean that unforgiveness and choosing to be offended needs to be 'on'. I am realizing all around me that life is too short. I don't say it as a cliche, I say it realizing that I do not want to take one heartbeat that my heart is allowed to beat for granted. I want, desire and must choose life. I want, desire and must choose to laugh in the midst of my feelings getting hurt. It is so very difficult many times when we can 'feel' like we are surrounded by 'downers' versus 'celebrators'.

When we choose to celebrate others and our own lives, revealing our gratefulness to God for another moment to serve Him is when we make the choice to see our atmosphere change for God's glory and honor.

We have opportunities to choose life or death daily; moment by moment. Let this day, this Christmas be about choosing life. If God Who became flesh for us could choose poverty by taking the form of a man; choosing the womb of a teenage girl over heaven; then I think we can show our gratefulness to God by choosing life, by choosing Him. He is Life and He came to give us life more abundantly! He came to give us Forgiveness and Forgiveness more abundantly!


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